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The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya

(Haruhi Suzumiya #1)

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  4,071 ratings  ·  290 reviews
Haruhi holds the fate of the universe in her hands; lucky for you she doesn't know it!

Meet Haruhi—a cute, determined girl, starting high school in a city where nothing exciting happens and absolutely no one understands her.

Meet Kyon—the sarcastic guy who sits behind Haruhi in homeroom and the only boy Haruhi has ever opened up to. His fate is now tied to hers.

Meet the S.O.
Paperback, 202 pages
Published 2009 by Yen On (first published June 6th 2003)
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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 ·  4,071 ratings  ·  290 reviews

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Start your review of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya (Haruhi Suzumiya, #1)
Jul 02, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: mystery-lovers
This is a review of the Haruhi Suzumiya light novels, volumes 1-7. I'd give the first few only 3 stars because they aren't as involved as the later ones: you reach the best parts as the puzzle pieces add up and create a bigger and bigger picture. The reason I didn't give the series five stars is that some stylistic choices don't translate well into English. Kyon is an extremely introspective narrator; metaphors are frequently bloated by English standards; the plot unravels so slowly that you don ...more
Aug 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
First of all, this is the first novel of "Haruhi Suzumiya" series. It's the prose format novel. It's not the manga version. I just want to explain it to avoid confusions. I was really eager to read this book since I've researched that on Japan, this book series beat on sales to the "Harry Potter" series, and I'm not going to compare or trying to make a fuzz of what series is better, just it got my attention since any book series that can compete on sales, on any country, with "Harry Potter" book ...more
I gave up on this because I just wasn't interested in the characters. The narrator, Kyon, is very passive in a way that I find boring, and Haruhi doesn't seem to have any personality beyond being rude and bored (bored people bore me; there are so many interesting things in the world! what's the matter with you?). Even her search for aliens or other weird phenomena doesn't seem to be because she especially fascinated by them; she just wants something novel. I doubt the other kids would be as nice ...more
Feb 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this book at Christmas holiday because I was bored. Surprisingly, the first sentence of the story is: When did I stop believing in Santa Claus?

What a great start!

I had watched the anime version years ago, and I had great fun. Even nowadays I can still remember the premise and main story. I suffered much when reading this book because I already knew the story's twists. But even with lack of surprise in plots, I enjoyed the voice of POV character. The unreliable first person POV with sar
Sean O'Hara
May 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
The Meloncholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is about a 14 year old Japanese schoolgirl.

(Well, there's a surprise. When was the last time you came across a light novel that didn't have a teenage girl as the protagonist? Japanese authors write about schoolgirls the way Americans write about middle aged white guys.)

True. Although to be fair, Haruhi isn't really the protagonist. She's more a force of nature. The real protag of the story is the narrator, Kyon. He doesn't want to be the hero -- he'd rather be a
Lindley Walter-smith
First of all, I'm really glad some Japanese light novels are making it into English. And there was a lot to like in this one - the science fiction plot, the ambiguity about who is the real source of power and strangeness - everyone in the novel seems to think it's Haruhi, but it's amazing that every event turns out to play to exactly what Kyon wishes for - are really original and enjoyable. There was a lot I found appealing and fascinating.

What wasn't appealing and fascinating was the relentless
Jun 18, 2009 rated it did not like it
I’ve never been a big fan of manga, which is probably why I’d never heard of this novel until quite recently. Apparently, it’s more or less the Japanese incarnation of Twilight. Not so much because of vampires and romance, but moreso because it’s a sub-par novel that has become an international craze. At least enough of a craze for its English translation to have a display near the front of Borders. When I mentioned it to my manga-nerd friends, they knew exactly what I was talking about. The nov ...more
Joshua Buhs
Dec 26, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: weird, fantasy, ya
I don't get it, I guess.

This is a fantasy story that became the basis for all sorts of artworks in Japan since it came out in 2003--manga and anime and books. The story starts out as a teen tale of high school before morphing into a fantasy. We learn that the weird girl who has forced the narrator and several other students into a club is actually a sort of God, whose powers--unrealized by her--might be creating fantastic beings: people with ESP; aliens; time travelers. And might also be capable
Jay H
Jan 27, 2011 rated it did not like it
I read this novel because I wanted more of the story after watching the anime, and because books always have more to offer than their movie/tv show counterparts. Well it was a huge disappointment. Everything, and I mean every single scene in the book was incorporated into the anime so there was nothing new, and the writing was so bland that it left almost no motivation to finish the book. I do feel that a lot of the voice is lost in translation, but even so there could've been so much more to of ...more
Dec 24, 2013 rated it liked it
I have very mixed feelings about this one. While I love the story, there are a number of very disturbing scenes and many of the characters, though amusing, are very unrealistic and unconvincing. It's definitely easier to suspend disbelief if you have a history of watching anime, because a lot of these things occur frequently in manga and anime.

I also think the translation could be better. I recognized some expressions that were literally translated from Japanese, but just didn't work in English
Colin Bruce Anthes
Feb 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
When I found the anime series The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, I was ecstatic. This comic splash, seamlessly travelling from cosmic science fiction to familiar high school nostalgia, was a masterpiece. “What I find incredible,” I said to a friend and co-watcher, “is that it’s so much more than just genre fiction.”

I have now read the first three books. They are no more than genre fiction.

The norm, of course, is for film and TV adaptations to capture a part or an essence of the book, and then f
Jul 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
I really love this story, the characters and most especially the narrator Kyon from his opening monologue about believing in Santa straight through to his ultimate solution of the Haruhi predicament.

6/3/17 reread, I had so much fun reading SOA last week I wanted to revisit Haruhi
Ryan :]
Sep 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Haruhi is Haruhi, what else is there to say?
While this manga may be a phenomenon in Japan, it left me cold. The titular character is not fun loving, carefree or exciting. She’s self involved, rude, crass, obnoxious and burdened with the kind of insufferable personality that’s supposed to register as outgoing and spirited but instead just comes across as meanly oblivious to other people’s feelings. When I read about her groping and molesting another female student in a way that would scream “harassment” in any other exchange, I was sickene ...more
Jun 21, 2014 rated it it was ok
This light novel's strongest feature is its imaginative premise, which takes the idea that perception creates reality to the extreme through the heroine Haruhi Suzumiya. Haruhi desperately wants to see the weird, magical, and science-fictional in her life, and the world could literally end if she doesn't get it.

Everyman "Kyon" (a nickname that we never learn the full name for) reluctantly gets caught up in the eye of the storm that is Haruhi, conceding to her silly schemes, grumbling the whole w
Jun 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: fans of Chuunibyou
I enjoyed this one a lot. It really spoke to the part of me that says "there must be more to reality."

This reads like a goofy rom com, and it is, but with a twist. It's told through the eyes of Kyon, who ends up sitting in front of a crazy girl who wants aliens, time travelers, and espers (psychics) to exist. She starts a club and drags him into it so they can search for these mysterious beings she knows exists but can't find.

And believe me, they do exist. They're right under her nose. And they'
Jul 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is the first volume from the infamous (?) Haruhi Suzumiya series. I was familiar with most of the plot thanks to its anime adaptation, but boy wasn't it a great feeling to recap all the shocking scenes and revelations about each SOS member on papar all over again!

Haruhi is actually one of those rare series I enjoy a lot despite lack of love for its heroine. Yet one has to admit that only when all characters are gathered in front of Haruhi as one entity (Team SOS) do we get to see the best
May 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Watch my full review here:

I love this series so much! I first watched the anime, then read the manga and then I discovered that there were actually novels too! I was so happy and this novel didn't let me down at all!
The story is the same as the anime and manga but that doesn't make it any less enjoyable. I loved seeing all my favourite characters again. I love how fierce and passionate Haruhi is, how hopeless and sarcastic Kyon is, the quietness of Nagato
Lauren (Northern Plunder)
My review was first posted on Northern Plunder, you can read more of my reviews there too.

Its been a little while since I read this book for my travelling book project so I'll try and keep this straight to the point.

The story of Haruhi Suzumiya is an odd one and definitely covers a lot and has a lot of potential - some of which it reaches. But overall it left me feeling a bit too weird and creeped out to fully enjoy the story it told so it ended up being just an okay book.

The main fault it had,
Feb 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Like most, I was drawn to the Haruhi Suzumiya franchise because of the extremely successful anime series and this, in turn, is my reason for struggling to enjoy the novel. The anime and novel are one and the same. Every thing that happens, every single line of dialogue, it is all the same. Now I know the novel came before the anime, but that doesn't make the reading experience any better, it is still an exact clone, not matter what way you look at it.

Also, on occasion, I did struggle with the bo
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Cute novel that's relatively self contained. Obviously there's a ton more to the story but as a quick read there's a definite complete story Arc. I'm mostly looking forward to reading past where the anime adaptation ended. ...more
Jan 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm a frequent visitor to the web site Recently, while doing so, I saw a page for a group of Japanese light novels that were translated into English, called Haruhi Suzumiya. I thought the premise was interesting, if somewhat weird, and read the first one, called The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya. It was... unique, to say the least.

Let's clear up a few points first. Though Haruhi Suzumiya is the character that is the “focus” of the novel, she is NOT the main character. That would be
Sep 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-in-english
I had an awesome experience discovering Haruhi Suzumiya's world.

What I knew about this collection before started reading was almost nothing, apart from the visual appearance of the main characters due to the anime. This was a bit misleading, given the fact that at first glance it looks like a school manga with all the well-known clichés. After reading the first part of the history, I can say that this is still true, but there a lot more in this plot that turns the story into a really appealing w
Aug 04, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ah, the memories of watching the Haruhi Suzumiya anime all came back as I read through this first novel in the series. Obviously, the novel goes into much more detail than the show.

And since I've watched the anime, I already knew what was to come, and the "surprising" events didn't catch me off guard, although it still was enjoyable to read.

It's a light read, which slowly starts off normal enough. The reader gets insight into the mind of Kyon, as it is through his perspective that he is the narr
Oct 23, 2009 rated it did not like it
This book was amazingly, incredibly poorly written. I can't blame it on translation; No translator could have done this awful a job. The main character is an absolute shmuck. He's complaining about things constantly - that or he's being perverted. The amount of adjectives shoved into every single one of his sentences is astounding, especially when you look at his passion (or lack thereof) for school, and his one or two word sentences. His opinion is that if someone is different, they should chan ...more
Feb 12, 2021 rated it it was ok
Shelves: own
I'm not gonna avoid spoilers because I don't really think this is worth reading.

So, to start with, rather than Haruhi Suzumiya, this seems all about the narrator, whose full name we don't learn, just the nickname Kyon, which apparently means something similar to 'Bambi' (it refers to a species of barking deer, and the n makes it a feminine name). His unique characteristics are non-existent, as being an awkward teenager and wanting to believe in paranormal things but not having enough evidence ar
May 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am so very excited to have finished the first light novel and I can't wait to read the next one. I love Harsh as a character as well as Kyon. I wish I knew his real name!

I learned about Haruhi Suzumiya at karaoke when my friend sang a song from the anime. I watched the Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya which got me into the show and the novels. I will need sone luck with this task of all things Haruhi Suzumiya.

I really like Kyon's point of view but if there was a version from Haruhi's POV, I w
Jun 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Quick thoughts: The anime did such a flawless job of adapting this that's there's really nothing to see here for prior fans. It reads well, but it's much more engaging to watch Haruhi's madcap antics and Kyon's deadpan toleration than to read it.

I won't go lower in rating since the story is great, but my thoughts on finishing were literally "I should have just watched the first disc again instead." Bump it up a star or two if you haven't seen the anime.
Mar 08, 2010 rated it liked it
A student recommended and then loaned this book to me because he wanted someone else to read it (so he could then talk to them about it). How could I say "no"? This was a quick, fun read--think anime/manga style but written as a traditional novel. ...more
Apr 24, 2014 rated it it was ok
I really liked the premise of the story, but I could not get past the obviousness of the male public the book was aimed at. Some parts were just plain wrong.
But I did the book beside those parts, so 2 stars.
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Nagaru Tanigawa ( 谷川 流 Tanigawa Nagaru)

Nagaru Tanigawa is a graduate of the Kwansei Gakuin University School of Law. In 2003, he won Kadokawa's Grand Prize for Literary World for his work on the Haruhi Suzumiya series.

Other books in the series

Haruhi Suzumiya (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • 涼宮ハルヒの溜息 (Haruhi Suzumiya, #2)
  • The Boredom of Haruhi Suzumiya (Haruhi Suzumiya, #3)
  • The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya (Haruhi Suzumiya, #4)
  • 涼宮ハルヒの暴走 [Suzumiya Haruhi no Bōsō] (Haruhi Suzumiya, #5)
  • The Wavering of Haruhi Suzumiya (Haruhi Suzumiya, #6)
  • The Intrigues of Haruhi Suzumiya (Haruhi Suzumiya, #7)
  • 涼宮ハルヒの憤慨 (Haruhi Suzumiya, #8)
  • 涼宮ハルヒの分裂 (Haruhi Suzumiya, #9)
  • 涼宮ハルヒの驚愕 (前) (Haruhi Suzumiya, #10)
  • 涼宮ハルヒの驚愕 (後) (Haruhi Suzumiya, #11)

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“As I looked at her from the side, I became newly aware of the softness of the curves of her face. Nagato said she was the "potential for evolution." According to Asahina, she was a "time warp." Koizumi treated her as "God." Then what about me? What did "Haruhi Suzumiya" mean to me?
Haruhi was Haruhi and nobody else. I wasn't going to use such overblown language to dodge the question. But I didn't happen to have a decisive answer. Isn't that natural? If someone points to the classmate sitting behind you and asks, "What is she to you?" How are you supposed to respond? ... No, sorry. Guess that's still dodging the question. Haruhi wasn't just a classmate to me. Of course, she also wasn't the "potential for evolution" or a "time warp," much less "God." She couldn't possibly be.”
“Just look at the Chinese characters used for the names of the days of the week. Color-wise, Monday (Moon) would be yellow. Tuesday (Fire) is red. Wednesday (Water) is blue. Thursday (Wood) is green. Friday (Gold) would be gold, Saturday (Earth) would be light brown. sunday (Sun) would be white.” 2 likes
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